You may be wondering what the deal is with the name of this. It is a strange little cross between a pot pie and shepherds pie that I came up with one day when I had a craving for pot pie. Growing up we sometimes had those frozen ones for dinner and it was always a fun meal as a kid. I mean, who doesn’t love a small sized pie just for them? I remember they took forever to bake but it all seemed worth it once you broke the crust and spooned piping hot pot pie into your mouth. Although, a bit of warning – I did try one of those frozen pot pies as an adult and it did not have the same appeal as it did as a child. Shocking, right?
So, what is the difference between pot pie and shepherds pie? Pot pies typically have a traditional pie crust with meat and vegetables mixed in a gravy sauce. Shepherds pie is ground lamb and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes with a little sauce. When I began developing this recipe I wanted a light gravy, lots of vegetables and a puff pastry crust. You can see why I decided to call it Sheepish Pot Pie – it does not really want to commit to a style.
One of my favorite things about this dish is that it is super easy to make but looks fancy. The first time I made the crust it was a complete disaster. I decided to form the lattice while it was on top of the pan which was a huge mistake. The butter in the pastry began to melt and I ended up with a massive mess of slimy dough. With this I learned that it is very important to assemble the lattice crust on a sheet of parchment paper and keep it in the fridge while you make the filling. The filling comes together quickly and is a blend of ground lamb, potatoes, carrots, peas and a light gravy sauce.
Sheepish Pot Pie
Author: The Ruby Kitchen
2 sheets of puff pastry, thawed but cold
1 lb. ground lamb
2 potatoes, diced
1 medium onion, diced
4 carrots, diced
¾ c. frozen peas
1-3 cloves garlic, minced or grated
2 Tbsp. parsley, chopped fine
1 Tbsp. flour
1 Tbsp. butter
1 c. beef stock
1 tsp. dried thyme
½ tsp. ground mustard
1 tsp. salt or more to taste
Pepper to taste
- To make lattice crust, unfold each sheet of pastry and cut into 1-2 inch strips. I found it easiest to use a pizza cutter and clean ruler to get straight edges.
- Trace the top of your skillet onto a sheet of parchment paper. Assemble the lattice one top of this template. This video is a great example if this is your first time making a lattice crust. Once assembled, cut the lattice around your traced template and place in fridge until step 8.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Place potatoes and a pinch of salt in a medium pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook 7-10 minutes until they begin to soften. Drain and set aside in a large bowl.
- In a large iron skillet, brown lamb until almost cooked through. Add onion and carrot and cook until lamb is cooked through and carrots are tender. Remove mixture and add to potatoes in large bowl.
- To make the gravy, melt butter in skillet and whisk in flour until a paste forms. Slowly add in beef stock and whisk until smooth. If it seems too thick add a little beef stock until you get a thin gravy that coats the back of a spoon.
- Add thyme, ground mustard, salt and pepper to gravy and fold in meat and vegetables. Fold in the frozen peas as well.
- Remove puff pastry from fridge. Mix egg with 2 Tbsp. water and brush onto puff pastry. Transfer the puff pastry to the skillet by gently sliding it onto the top. Immediately place in oven and bake 25-30 minutes until pastry puffs and is golden brown.